We were successful in obtaining a mesothelioma compensation award for Mr H who contacted us shortly after he was diagnosed with the incurable asbestos related cancer.
Mr H had been suffering with breathing problems for around a year before his GP referred him for an x-ray. A subsequent scan showed he had fluid on his lung and a biopsy was taken. This sadly confirmed a diagnosis of mesothelioma.
As with all our mesothelioma compensation claims, Mr H’s claim was prioritised and we quickly took a witness statement from him. Mr H was able to recall that he was exposed to asbestos when working for two employers, namely, ICI and Spooner Foods.
For approximately one year, around 1967, Mr H worked as a piping draughtsman for ICI at both their Wilton and Billingham plants. His job involved going around the plants, measuring up old pipework and drawing plans to replace it. There were miles of pipes at the plants and almost every pipe was lagged with asbestos. The steam pipes were lagged with asbestos for insulation for insulation purposes.
Mr H recalled that the pipework was in a poor state of repair, with old asbestos hanging off the pipes. To carry out his work, Mr H had to get very close, touching the pipes as he measured them. As he went about his work, asbestos dust from the lagging got on his hands and clothes. The asbestos covering on the pipes had not been painted and so asbestos dust and debris got on Mr H’s work clothes.
He recalled that by the end of each day he would be able to see grey asbestos dust on his jacket and before he hung it up in the hut ready for the next day he would shake his jacket to get the dust off it.
Mr H also recalled there were laggers working at ICI and they used pre-formed lengths of asbestos to lag the pipes around the plant.
Whilst working at ICI, Mr H was not provided with any form of breathing equipment and this omission was relied upon in support of his mesothelioma claim.
Mr H also remembered being exposed to asbestos during his employment with Spooner Foods in Ilkley, West Yorkshire. He worked for this company between approximately 1968 and 1975 as a design draughtsman. The company made industrial ovens and provers for bakeries.
Although Mr H did not see anyone cutting up asbestos, he believed this was used in the ovens to prevent heat loss.
Mr H’s job involved designing and he had cause to visit the workshop if there was ever a problem with a design. He recalled that the workshop was a very dusty, hazy place.
A number of years ago Mr H had seen an advertisement in the local paper from a solicitor looking for anyone who had worked at Spooner Foods who might be suffering with an asbestos related condition. This further fuelled Mr H’s belief that he had been exposed to asbestos whilst working for this company.
We were able to trace insurance for Spooner Foods, which had previously been called Spooner Food Machinery, and collated witness evidence from Mr H’s former colleagues in support of his claim for asbestos compensation. A medical report was obtained from a respected expert in asbestos diseases and, due to his condition, the report was completed without Mr H having to attend a medical appointment. This speeded up the mesothelioma claim process.
The claim for mesothelioma compensation was successful and Mr H received over £90,000 in settlement of his asbestos compensation claim.. Whilst this settlement, unfortunately could not rid him of the insidious asbestos disease, it did help to give Mr H peace of mind that his wife would be looked after financially.
If you require assistance in pursuing a claim for asbestos compensation please contact us today on our freephone number 0800 038 6767. Alternatively, head over to the ‘Contact Us’ page, complete the form and we will be in touch.